“I hope humanity…”
Agnes Etherington Art Centre
Davies Foundation Gallery
30 August 2014 – 12 April 2015
Co-Curated with Dr. Sarah E.K. Smith
While the global environment struggles to cope with destruction from human development, hope for change is paramount to averting further damage, as well as reversing such ruin. A concept rooted deeply in our emotions and guided by our morals, hope has the power to unite, inspire and effect positive change.
I hope humanity… draws its title from a painting by Douglas Coupland that prompts viewers to engage with its QR-code function and provides an opportunity to contemplate the status of humanity and its potential to transform in the future. Other works in this exhibition engage the concept of hope in a more intimate local context. For instance, Rebecca Soudant’s A Tapestry of Birth speaks to environmental anxieties of an expectant mother, addressing hope for future generations.
Connecting local and global assessments of the environment, I hope humanity… features works of photography, painting and sculpture by Carole Condé and Karl Beveridge, Robert Fones, Eleanor Bond and Don Maynard, in addition to those mentioned above. These Canadian artists express environmental concern through explicit references to humanity’s impositions on the earth. Each work reminds us of the exploitative relationship among industry, technology and the environment, asking us to think critically about what we see and how we may be implicated. The question remains: in the face of such destruction, can hope endure?